York Ecoschool symposium inspires green schools policy

A new environmental policy could have staff representatives from schools across the Avon Maitland District School Board discussing ways to make their schools more eco-friendly by the end of September, reported the Stratford Beacon Herald June 29. The approval of the policy by trustees last night follows a presentation by teachers and students in February that drew attention to environmental issues within the Avon Maitland district. “It could be something as simple as remembering to turn off a light when you leave a room,” said Pat Stanley, superintendent of education, who attended a conference entitled Ecoschools at York University in May (organized by the Faculty of Environmental Studies). Stanley said she hopes to gather teacher and support staff representatives from schools in the Avon Maitland district together in September or October to share the information from the conference.

Investor protection plan will boost confidence, says Milevsky

Mutual fund holders will have up to $1 million coverage per account should their dealer go bankrupt, thanks to the establishment of the Investor Protection Corporation and its $30-million fund announced yesterday by the Mutual Fund Dealers Association of Canada, reported the Toronto Star June 30. “It’s a rare event (that a dealer becomes insolvent); that’s why the $30 million should give a level of confidence for investors,” said Moshe Milevsky, finance professor in York’s Schulich School of Business. Asked if first-year contributions to the plan of $5 million might cause a rise in fees, Milevsky said. “I don’t think it will, you’ve got $30 million spread over the billions of dollars invested in mutual funds. It could decrease fees as insurance costs for dealers could decrease.”

Harris research initiative will help children’s emotional health

A new research initiative at York University will build on new knowledge of the brain’s development to help set children, including those with developmental disorders, on the path toward emotional and intellectual health, reported the Canadian Jewish News. The story on the launch of York’s Milton and Ethel Harris Research Initiative (MEHRI) was carried in the June 30 edition. The story included the fact that the $5-million gift, made through the York University Foundation, is the single largest private-research gift in York’s history. Donor Milton Harris, who died earlier this year, was president of the Canadian Jewish Congress in the mid-1980s.

John Hunkin to retire from CIBC

CIBC chief executive John Hunkin is stepping down after 36 years with Canada’s fifth-largest bank, the past six at its helm, reported Canadian Press June 29. Hunkin, 60, a York alumnus (MBA ‘69) and a member of York’s Board of Governors, will leave the bank Aug. 1 and be succeeded by Gerry McCaughey, 49, currently president and chief operating officer. CIBC chairman William Etherington said the bank “is better and stronger because of John Hunkin’s leadership. Operationally, financially and strategically, CIBC is on track and well-positioned for the future.” Since Hunkin took the helm in 1999, the bank’s earnings have grown 86 per cent and its stock price has climbed 112 per cent, marginally better than the bank sector overall.

BDC announces new board members

The Business Development Bank of Canada (BDC), announced the appointment of Andrina Lever, a member of York’s Board of Governors, to the BDC board of directors, reported the Globe and Mail, June 28.

Amid the Calgary boos, Argos speak of their York exit

“And now, in the blue corner, weighing in at 10,000 pounds, hailing from parts unknown . . . OK, Toronto . . . ladies and gentlemen, the team you love to hate from the town you love to hate even more . . . the defending Grey Cup-champion Toronto Argos . . . ” Booooo! Double boooo! Yes, the perfect way to start the 2005 CFL season in Calgary, wrote Calgary Herald sports writer Bruce Dowbiggen June 29. Referring to comments by Argo president Keith Pelley that a ticket subscriber told him the team was fashionable again, the writer said that trendiness has even withstood the events of last winter as the club tried to move first to Varsity Stadium at University of Toronto, then to York University. But when the two university projects rudely collapsed, the humbled Argos were left with returning to the sterile confines of the retractable dome at the Rogers Centre. The PR about-face was softened when Rogers Corporation offered a much friendlier rent deal and cosmetic changes to reduce the acres of empty seats in the top deck. Pelley is sanguine about the odyssey. “Varsity was a dream location, but it fell through. We tried to make it work at York, too, but if we’d gone there and it didn’t work, we’d have had no exit strategy. The franchise would be dead. So when Rogers called, it became a partnership for us.”

BC high school grad plans Latin American studies at York

The beaches of British Columbia’s Semiahmoo Peninsula are worlds away from the barrios of Latin America, reported Surrey’s Peace Arch News June 29. And one high school student who joined a church trip to El Salvador was so changed by seeing communities rocked by civil wars and ravaged by natural disasters and poverty that he enrolled at York University so he could study in the Latin American & Caribbean Studies Program. Michael Daser, a recent Semiahmoo Secondary School graduate, said the life-altering experience inspired his choice. “(I’ll) study the economy, the problems, how the problems can be fixed and study the relations between Canada and Latin America,” Daser said.

Former York student mounts David French play That Summer

Millbrook’s 4th Line Theatre opens its season with two plays chosen by artistic director and former York student Robert Winslow, reported The Peterborough Examiner June 30. The second production, by Ontario playwright David French, called That Summer, is about two sisters discovering the magic of spending a summer at a Muskoka cottage. “I was big admirer of his plays as a teenager going to York University in the ’70s,” said Winslow, who met the playwright again while teaching at Trent University. “I said ‘have any of your plays ever been done outdoors or do you think any would work outdoors?’ He said ‘I don’t know.’ The next day he came to my class and he brought me a script called That Summer and said this one might work outdoors.”